Mendota Community Hospital may join OSF Healthcare System

MENDOTA — Mendota Community Hospital has signed a Letter of Intent to affiliate with OSF Healthcare System, the two organizations announced May 21.

“OSF and Mendota Community Hospital share a united vision for the future,” said Kevin Schoeplein, chief executive officer of OSF Healthcare System, which is owned and operated by the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis.

“We want to ensure that the tradition of high-quality health care in Mendota and the surrounding communities is not only maintained, but enlarged,” Schoeplein added.

The decision followed months of analysis and deliberation, including a strategic planning process begun by the Mendota Community Hospital Board of Directors in late 2013. Like many stand-alone, not-for-profit hospitals, Mendota Community Hospital has been evaluating the best way to serve the community in light of the changing health care landscape.

Margo Gallagher Schmitz, president of the MCH Board of Directors, noted the hospital brings to the affiliation “not only a great team of medical professionals, but a hospital building that is only two years old.” To keep those resources in the community, hospital leaders had to be “forward thinking,” she said, adding that “OSF HealthCare is a strong fit for our hospital and those we serve.”

Next steps toward the affiliation — expected to be completed later this year — include a due diligence process, developing a definitive agreement, and applying for a Certificate of Exemption for a change of ownership.

“This is great news for those we serve,” said Judy Christiansen, interim chief executive officer of Mendota Community Hospital. In addition to preserving local access to quality health care, the move will improve availability of specialty services and new technologies.

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